I’m here to tell you my personal story and ask for your support for a very important cause, the John Ritter Foundation.
My family suffers from a genetic disorder which results in the formation of an aortic aneurysm. When undetected, an aortic aneurysm eventually results in an aortic dissection. 50% of persons suffering from an undetected aortic dissection die within 48 hours of the onset of the dissection. My father, John Weaver, passed away at the age of 42 and his brother, Hart, passed away at the age of 24. Both died as a result of aortic dissections. In 2005, my brother, Scott, at the age of 36, was rushed to the hospital and doctors discovered that he too had an aortic aneurysm. He was fortunate they discovered it in time and performed surgery to replace his aorta. After his surgery, our family was selected to participate in a genetic research program with the University of Texas Health Science Research Center in Houston.
Through this study I’ve learned there is a 50-50 chance I have the gene that causes aortic aneurysms. Worse, if I have the gene then there is also a 50-50 chance my sons Jack and Luke have the gene. Fortunately, I’ve had my aorta checked annually since I was 13 and there has never been a sign of an aneurysm to date.
As a result of my family’s medical history, we now have a strong affiliation with the John Ritter Foundation. The Foundation was created in October 2003 just weeks after the death of “Three’s Company” actor John Ritter due to an acute aortic dissection. Formed by his widow Amy Yasbeck and their family for the original purpose of receiving donations in honor of John’s life, the Foundation has greatly expanded to become a leading funder for focused on thoracic aortic disease education, support and research.
Although there has been extensive genetic research performed, there is much more I can do for the cause and I’m asking you to join me in the fight. I’m hopeful that the genes that cause this disorder will soon be discovered, so my boys do not have to endure what so many members of my family have experienced.
The John Ritter Foundation has selected me to run on their team at the New York Marathon on November 3, 2013, and I have a set a goal to raise $10,000 for the Foundation. I’ m asking you to please make a donation directly to the Foundation. If you each donate $500, it will take only 20 donors to reach my goal. If you each donate $250, it will take only 40 donors to reach my goal. However, any amount is helpful and greatly appreciated. Making a donation and joining the fight is so easy. Simply click on this link to make a donation www.crowdrise.com/gregweaver .
Thank you very much and please wish me luck in my training for the New York Marathon!
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